Arcadia's dress up box... and a little something new.

27.8.09

As soon as I read the invite for the Arcadia bloggers event, I knew it was going to be fun times ahead... Drinks, Topshop, Dorothy Perkins, Miss Selfridges collections for us to try & a photographer to document our outfits. Pretty much a dreamy set up. And spot on as well as I was thinking just today how I haven't been posting outfit photos for absolute ages on the blog. I don't really have time to set everything up and do it at the moment, so tonight was a good time to catch up!

I went there with my favourite partner in crime Cate from Bitchbuzz and it was nice to see the familiar faces of DisneyRollerGirl & Clare from Young Shields. Miggy pulled some pretty cool shapes for the camera & I really think Tyra would be proud. I also got to put a face to the name Discotheque Confusion, which was nice!

I tried on a few things, but in the end, this pretty simple jersey floral dress won. It is from Dorothy Perkins of all places, as are the shoes if I remember correctly.

I am also going to use this as a chance to show you my new hair! I am still getting used to it, as it is a pretty drastic change, but I sort of love it already!

Arcadia Dress Up Box

I also tried on the super coveted Ashish leopard wedges, and drooled over some KTZ pieces I had been previously drooling over at London Fashion Week's exhibition back in February. There are lots of pretty things coming up in Topshop & Dorothy Perkins for the Fall, so start saving up will be my advice of the day...

Arcadia Dress Up Box
I think this dress needs a belt to really work on me, but I couldn't find any that I liked or would go with it...

The photographer was Alistair Guy, you should go and check out his work RIGHT NOW.

Telling Tales - Fantasy & Fear in Contemporary Design

26.8.09

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Last weekend, I went to the V&A to see the Telling Tales exhibition. I desperately wanted to see as it showcases furniture and objects designed with story-telling in mind. Put beautiful designs and fairy tales allusions in the same sentence, and I am there. All the work presented is from young designers, mainly from the Netherlands. They refer to themes such as fairy tales, obviously, but also status display and its conventions or the fear of death, all experiences everyone can relate to.

My first reaction, while standing in front of the Linen-Cupboard-House by Jurgen Bey, in a room filled with forest sounds was "Did someone get in the world in my head to steal the furniture?". I am not a furniture designer, or a designer full stop, but when I dream about furniture, this is what it looks like.

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Linen-Cupboard-House by Jurgen Bey

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Bathboat by Wieki Somers

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'Fig Leaf' wardrobe
by Tord Boontje

As you progress through the exhibition, you witness a mixture of the completely whimsical and the anxiety induced nightmares, via some sort of Mad Hatters Tea Party of giant ceramics, rugs with oversized designs, tables and chairs with bizarre proportions.

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Pixelated Chair by Jurgen Bey, 'Lathe Chair VIII' by Sebastian Brajkovic, 'George III' chest of drawers by Gareth Neal & 'Venus and Mars' chair and mirror by Boym Partners

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'The Pyramids of Makkum' tulip vase
by Studio Job

It is divided into three parts: the Forest Glade presents work inspired by fairytales, myths and nature, the Enchanted Castle displays objects usually associated with wealth and status that have been subverted, and the last section explores themes of mortality.

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'The Lovers' rug by Fredrikson Stallard

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"Do you hear what I hear?" by Kelly McCallum & Perished Bench by Studio Job

If you are in London, or are just coming to visit, make sure you go and see this wonderful exhibition, it is on till the 18th of October and it is free!

Win a trip to Paris with Eurostar!

24.8.09


I was treated to a Little Break in Paris a few weeks ago, so there's no reason why one of you shouldn't be able to go as well!

Eurostar and We Are Social are teaming up with Mademoiselle Robot to offer one of you a pair of return tickets from London to Paris! Pretty sweet, non? That means you can bring your lover, your BFF, your mum, whoever you like with you. You can stay for as long as you like as well. The only restrictions are that you have to be over 18 and travel before the end of October (but that leaves you some time). You will be travelling on the Eurostar in Leisure Select, which means extra space, free food, glossy mags and champagne.

The Eiffel tower, the snow & me

To enter, all you need to do is leave a comment with a picture of what you think illustrate Parisian style best. It can be a Polyvore collage, a picture, a photo of you in a Parisian inspired outfit, anything you think embodies Parisian style.

First attempt at Tilt Shift

We Are Social will pick 5 entries and I will choose the winner amongst these.
You have until 6pm on Monday 31 August 2009 to enter!!!
Remember if you don't live in London, you can enter as long as you arrange your own travel to London.

A vos marques, prêts... PARTEZ!!!! GOOD LUCK!

LG Pout competition... and the winner is...

21.8.09

❤❤❤ KATIEKATE ❤❤❤




All your pouts were pretty awesome, and really everyone deserved to win, but KatieKate's pretty face PLUS the cute dog got me good!

KatieKate, please get in touch laetitia@mademoisellerobot.com about your prize, and congratulations again!!!

Everyone, remember that Monday you can enter a new competition to win Eurostar tickets (UK residents only - soz).

MR Crush on Courtney Brims

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I can't remember how I landed on Courtney's website, but as soon as I caught a glimpse of a red panda, a fawn and a couple of owls, I was sold. She is a self-taught artist from Australia finding inspiration in "fairytales, Victorian illustrations, memories and dreams". In short, she is the perfect candidate for a ginormous girl art crush.

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I mean, animals, forest, pretty ladies with an air of Gothic romance to them, what's not to like? You can even buy her prints online.
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And now for something completely different... Je me rends compte que j'ai de plus en plus de lectrices françaises, après quelques parutions dans la presse, et je me demandais si vous vouliez que je traduise mes articles en Français? Laissez un commentaire sous ce post pour me dire oui ou non!

A taste of Summer

20.8.09

A week spent far from the city in a place where you have to hide from the heat was enough to remind me what the Summer is. I love the Summer and I miss it here in London. The lazy days spent under a noisy ceiling fan, the light breeze lifting white curtains and a strong reading regime.

In just a week, I forgot the noise, the weather, the civilisation, the internet, work and everything. Getting back to it is pretty difficult!

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LG Pout competition, giveaway a gogo!

19.8.09




LG and POUT are teaming up to throw a fashion event in London tomorrow night. In the run up to this exclusive event, they're giving away this phone (worth around £400) to one of my readers!
So it looks like one of you lucky people could get your hands on a brand new LG GD900 Crystal by simply participating to this giveaway. It is pretty easy too:

Just leave a comment on this post with a link to a pic of you showing your best pout... I know some of you are professional pouters, so it should be fairly simple...

I will announce the winner on Friday!

Good luck everyone!!!!





Runways at night and Train Tracks at Dawn

I am back in London after a break in the South of France, greeted by a lovely surprise sent to me by Steve Damstra: the new Folded Light video for Train Tracks at Dawn. Directed by Jon Watts of Waverly Films, it fits perfectly with the mood of the song, which I love. It got me stuck to my chair with a huge smile on my face. So whimsical, like a fairytale... with babes.

Special bonus points to Jaffe and Steve for still being massive babes while wearing adult baby costumes.


I cannot stress enough that all of you must go and buy their album right this minute as it is amaaaaaaazing.
If you would like to know more about the making of the video, you can read about it on the Video Militia.

Becoming... Baby from Dirty Dancing [redux -- MR on holidays]

18.8.09

I feel like I haven't done a "Becoming" post in ages... and I kinda miss it. To be honest, I am not even entirely sure why I have been neglecting this particular feature as it is possibly the one I enjoy doing most. It is not that I haven't been watching movies and TV shows, because I have some for breakfast, lunch, dinner and sometimes a sneaky afternoon snack.

I have also been meaning to do a post about the style in Dirty Dancing for absolute ages because it is the perfect example of 80's doing 50's (think chiffon full skirts with giant plastic fluoro earrings). I suppose I should hate it as a lover of all things 50's, but I actually quite like the way the 80's reinterpreted that era. I am not going to discuss it too much, as I will try an write a whole post about this very soon.

I love Dirty Dancing and have seen it many, many times, think of me what you like, I don't care.

Now that this is out of the way, back to Baby's style. I have never really paid much attention to it for some strange reason but when I watched DD again recently, I started taking mental notes about her outfits, to use them as summer wardrobe inspiration. There is nothing massively noteworthy about them, yet they are all totally perfect, from the high-waisted denim cut offs to the knotted checked shirts & striped tees. Even the length of her trousers is good (after writing this, I feel like I should apologise profusely to all my university professors who took upon themselves to teach me important things about art, philosophy and history for many years. Yes, all that to write nonsense about the length of a character's trousers in a romcom from the 80's starring Patrick Swayze, what have I done with my life, I used to be clever, believe it or not).

Her outfits are all pretty basic: a top and a bottom, no crazy layering, no crazy accessorising. Everything is in the way she wears them. Her wardrobe is very realistic as it would easily fit in a suitcase if you were going on holidays. It pretty much consists of: 3 vests, 2 tees, 2 pairs of shorts, 3 shirts, 1 dress, 1 skirt, 1 cardigan, 2 pairs of shoes, 1 bikini & a rain jacket. Really you won't ever need much more than this in the summer months, which makes it the perfect inspiration for a capsule wardrobe. More and more I tend to think that any given season's wardrobe should fit in a suitcase. Anything extra can be ditched. I am in the process of trying to apply this to my own clothes (hence the boutique).

When you are done sniggering at the thought of modelling any part of your life around Dirty Dancing, have a good look at the photos below, and pay some respect. Nobody leaves Baby in a corner.

Dirty Dancing

Dirty Dancing

Most of these items can be found really easily on the high street or in vintage/charity shops, so getting Baby's look for the Summer will definitely not set you back too badly.


Fast Fashion vs High Fashion [redux -- MR on holidays]

16.8.09




Every year, at the end of the Summer, I decide to stop spending masses of money in high street shops and start investing in designer items. For some reason, I fail every year. No matter how many lists I make with exactly what I need for the Fall and Winter, I always end up tripping and impulse buying the whole of Primark, 50% of H&M and 25% of Zara. And this, my friends, is not cool. Fast Fashion is dangerous. Very dangerous. It looks like High Fashion, it costs less than High Fashion, it is easily accessible BUT... it never lasts and unlike vintage garments, it doesn't sell when second hand either.

So how do I stick to this new fashion motto and stop myself from buying quick fix fashion?

❤ Quite simply, I try to stay away from the high street. If I feel a sudden urge to shop, I turn to Craft Fashion, or to vintage stores. At least, there is no risk of impulse buying in there, as it can be a real challenge to find the nice vintage piece you lust after.

❤ I go to department stores and LOOK very closely at all the designer items I'd like. I actually inspect the seams, feel the fabrics, try them on and admire the perfect cuts. Then I go and do the same in High Street shops. BOOM. Instant turn off.

❤ I do the math. Generally I buy about 4/5 new things a month. So I spend an average of £150 on clothes every month. Not enough to buy a Luella dress, indeed. BUT... hold off the crazy spree for a month AND THEN, the dress is mine. With a good conscience of having saved to buy something as well.

❤ If I really can't resist the urge, the dreaded call of the shops, I go for a walk. When I come back, I just have a quick look through my wardrobe to search for items I had forgotten that I could give a new life to (just today, I brought 3 pairs of shoes to be repaired - just like having 3 new pairs!)

❤ I try to think of the future, when Mila will be going through my old clothes searching for hidden gems, like I did in my mum's wardrobe. The High Street clothes won't last, High Fashion ones will.

This year, I PROMISE I will try. And if I can't resist, I will raid my local charity shop. No High Street for this cat this time!

How do you deal with impulse buying?

xxx

Reading list -
this article from the Guardian
this one from the BBC Blast website
Read this too from the Counterfeit Chic blog
and this from the Independant

Monsieur Robot presents: San Francisco Style [redux -- MR on holidays]

14.8.09

Let me introduce to you the wonderful Monsieur Robot, my favourite man in the whole world. He will join me from now on to give his tasteful opinion on Men's fashion. So if you have a boyfriend, husband, little brother, dad or grandad looking for style advice, look no further!
xxx Mademoiselle Robot



Hello!

Do you have a penis?

Do you sometimes like wearing clothes?

You do???

Well then you're in the right place!

I've been in San Francisco for almost a month now…and I can count the number of stylish people I have seen on one hand. Three to be exact. As a big city I can't help but compare SF to NY one of the best places to see street style. So why is SF so different?

Firstly SF is a great city, a green city that still lives in the shadow of its hippy founders. Why would that affect the street style? Well apart from the unfathomable amounts of tie dye I have had to endure San Francisco is about RECYCLING and I don't just mean your paper, plastic and cans, I mean your wardrobe too. The city is FULL of thrift stores where you take your old duds and trade them for someone else's, or for cold hard cash. These places are FULL of great clothes and I get the sense that last seasons styles don't go in the bin here, they go to someone who doesn't care what season it is, and that's a great thing.

From the big stores like Barneys (my first stop in NY) to the smaller stores, what I have noticed is even these places have selected clothes which verge on the bland. The Helmut Lang and McQueen selections on offer are the most wearable of the collection. Strangely, in terms of Haute Couture Margiela is big here, but then ostensibly that makes sense; that functional minimalism and carefully created 'worn in' ness of Margiela's clothes are perfect in this city. They look just like you fished them out of the back rail in some dingy thrift store; they just come with a massive price tag. The Marc by Marc Jacobs store in the city is also an interesting indicator of SF style. It's low on actual collection pieces and high on Marcs extra cheap 'special items' almost half of the store taken up by goods that cost no more than $30. The fact is that if you compliment someone here on what they're wearing they're more likely to brag about how cheap it was than what the label says.


photo - Street Fancy

The shop I most frequently find myself in is Urban Outfitters, I'd rather shop somewhere that doesn't have several branches in London, but I've yet to find a store here that I want to shop in that much. What's interesting though is that the hipsters frown on Urban Outfitters. I can understand this as the store does make it too easy to achieve a 'whole look' but then that's just good business, you can get underwear, shoes, accessories, bags, coats and hats - the whole lot in one shop. Instant cool? Perhaps not. The ethos of Urban Outfitters is in direct conflict with the cities fashion recycling vibe. $48 for a shirt that LOOKS second hand? You can spend a little bit of time and find an actual vintage shirt for about $12, like I did.

photo - Street Fancy

So as the Londoner in SF with my capsule wardrobe full of brightly coloured and sometime avant garde clothes will I ever get a chance to wear my one armed Cosmic Wonder sweatshirt? I like the city's style because it's rooted in functionality and practicality, all the cycling that the San Franciscans do has bred a distinct kind of cyclist chic. Shirts are tucked in. Jeans aren't too skinny for obvious reasons, keys are kept on climbing clips on the back of your jeans and bags are functional; rucksacks and backpacks are the only option on a bike. One trouser leg rolled up and you're good to go. Does it look good? Yes. Will I do it when I return to London? No, but I'll sure miss all these cheap clothes.

Monsieur Robot

Travelling in style [redux -- MR on holiday]

12.8.09

Today, as I am driving to Paris, I was thinking of one of my favourite films, Two for the Road by Stanley Donen, starring Audrey Hepburn and Albert Finney. I have rarely seen movies depicting so well love & marriage and how people deal with the ups & downs. It is also quite pleasant to see Audrey Hepburn in a role that is slightly different from the characters she normally plays. Let's say a more ''natural'' role. But my point wasn't to go on and on about this film, but to have a look at Audrey's style in the movie.





It is interesting because she ages in the movie and you can see her evolving style. If I had enough photos of me in my early 20s, I'd quite like to be able to see my style evolve and try to predict what I will dress like in my 40s or 50s.
Also, what I love about this film, and what made me think about it today, is her choice of travel outfits. A bit Jane Birkin, very Audrey Hepburn (obviously), practical, stylish without ever being over the top. A hard thing to achieve in my opinion, especially when it is time to hit the road!

What is your favourite travel outfit?

xxx

We are going on a Summer Holiday...

10.8.09

I am packing to go to the south of France as you read this. I was going to wait till tomorrow, when I am actually leaving to post this, but I have so much to do, I might as well start the holibob today!

Working from home on your own projects all the time can quickly become an all consuming thing. I forget not to work at the weekend, when I go away, I always take notes for the blog, or think about improvements I could make to Mademoiselle Style. Recently I have been under a lot of pressure and it left me feeling anxious, tired and pretty wiped out. I can't complain though as it means that business is a-boomin', but I really need a holiday in the chillaxation zone, with no internet, no blogging, no emails, no twitter - just plain old real life shit.

I can't just leave you empty handed for a week, so I have compiled a little list of websites that made me think, swoon and giggle in the past few weeks, hopefully they should keep you entertained while I am away. If you have links to share, please do so in the comments and keep them coming!

I also arranged for some redux posts to be published here, hope you won't miss me too much :)

I thought I'd give you a few links to look at while I am away:



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Super cute photo stories about two molars by Inhae Renee Le. Here's the back story:
"When I was young, I placed my baby teeth under my pillow and when i woke up I'd find a shiny new quarter. But whatever happened to those little teeth? Where did they go? Would I ever see them again?
Many years later, a little tooth was standing at my door. It looked familiar. Its name was ickle. Welcome home, my milk toof!"


Photo Laurence via Galadarling

Gala's website is always full of really interesting articles, but recently, I particularly enjoyed her list of 50 things every girl should do. I realised I have already done quite a lot from part 1, but I can't wait to start working on the rest! What about you? How are you doing on the list?

Catwalk Genius


This is basically micro-financing for fashion design. For £11, you can buy a share in a fashion designer. Once 5,000 shares have sold, the funding is used to create a new collection.
On the site you will find designer like Tour de Force (my personal fave), Fred Butler or Kelly Love. It is the easiest way to help fund new designers.

La Photocabine
ohoto
For the photobooth obsessed, and I am sure a lot of you are. I know I am. There nothing like an old fashioned fotoautomat film strip. This site transforms your computer in an old school photobooth and lets you download or print the film strip afterwards. Just click on the curtain, then on the red button.
The site is in French, but "Imprimer" means "print" and "télécharger" means "download".

Looklet
If you like Polyvore, you will love Looklet. It is basically the same except that you can see clothes on models and it is Swedish... see where I am going with this? Yep, it has all your favourite Swedish brands including Monki, my personal winner.


I know I have written about Sarah just last week, but I can't encourage you enough to go and have a look at her lovely site.

I have millions of things to tell you when I get back, but in the meantime, ce n'est qu'un au revoir mes chéris! If you want to book a Style Consultation, I will be available again from Thursday 20th August.

Coco Avant Chanel & Loulou Loves You giveaway winner!

7.8.09

You all know Liane by now, she is my personal superhero/assistant! From time to time, she will have her own little space on this blog. She went to see Coco Avant Chanel the other day and wrote a little review for you. Enjoy! ----- Also if you entered the Loulou Loves You giveaway last week, read on to find out if you have won...

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Every time I think about making a dress for myself or “customising” some of my clothes I stop myself because I’m not a designer. And because I’m not a designer, what’s the fun of wearing clothes that I made.
I am, of course, very wrong. And I only really realised this while watching stunning Audrey Tautou as Gabrielle "Coco" Chanel making beautiful hats and customising men’s clothing in Coco Avant Chanel.

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The film is probably not what most people expect; it is not full of beautiful Chanel twin pieces and a determined designer who knows exactly that what she wants from life is to make clothes. Instead it is of a young girl who is abandoned with her sister by their father and put in an orphanage in the 1890s and who grows up to be a seamstress in the day and a cabaret singer by night. She meets the wealthy ladies man Etienne Balsan and moves to his estate just outside Paris, always longing to become a singer and actress. Coco spends her days lazing about and although Balsan hides her from his aristocratic friends at first she eventually moves within his circles and attracts attention through her androgynous and classic clothes and her outspoken attitude. Although her style is not taken seriously to begin with, she eventually is being approached to design hats for the wealthy women she meets at those lavish parties.
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And even though “the only good thing about being in love is making love”, Coco meets an English business man who she falls madly in love with. Arthur "Boy" Capel has also a part in Coco recognising her talents as a designer and supports her desire to work by helping her open her own business.

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I don’t want to give too much away as this film is really worth watching – Audrey Tautou’s performance is immaculate! Coco Avant Chanel is one of the very few films that could go on forever. Although a big Hollywood production company was involved, surprisingly they managed not to turn it into some naff blockbuster (apparently they did consider Keira Knightley for the role of Coco).
Coco Avant Chanel is a charmingly told rag to riches story that will draw you in completely – not just for fashionistas!

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(And this is a very cheap shot but Coco’s handsome English business man is indeed very, very handsome.)

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Now on a completely different note, here is the winner of the Loulou Loves You giveaway... As usual, I used random.org's number generator to pick a winner.

And the winner is...

///// Caroline G /////
my first French winner!

So Caroline, get in touch with me laetitia@mademoisellerobot.com so I can tell you how to get your prize and put you in touch with Loulou for sizing etc...

Congratulations!!!!

Thank you to all of you who entered, better luck next time! As soon as I am back from holidays, I have another super cool prize for you to win!



The only Supermarket you actually want to go to

6.8.09

sarah

Yesterday, I was invited to rummage through the treasures of Supermarket Sarah, an online vintage concept store based around an ever changing thematic wall located in Sarah's Portobello studio. We drank tea, ate some cakes, chatted a little about life, work, online and offline adventures and I had a look around the place...

Tea & Cakes @ SupermarketSarah's

"Boudoir shopping" (I just coined this, peoplezzzz) seems to be a new trend, maybe due to the recession, maybe because we are all getting sick of being treated like cattle on the high street... I thoroughly enjoy it. It is no secret that I am already a big fan of Naomi's Vintage Secret, so I am glad there is now another boudoir ready for me to go wild and trinket happy. The selection at Sarah's is an eclectic mix of vintage dresses, designer hats, kitsch trinkets and all sorts of fun stuff we love to have... and have to have. I challenge anyone to visit her site, or go to her Portobello pad and leave empty handed. I didn't really go there with the intention of buying anything, but I ended up with a Felikat rosette and a pair of glasses.

Sarah from SupermarketSarah
Sarah is a babe

As you probably understood by now, Supermarket Sarah is both an online shop AND a real life one. She created a display wall in her studio, which acts as a shop front to display a few selected items according to a theme. You can then browse the rest of the shop by simply clicking the "browse" link. It is all nice and easy, you pay by Paypal or email Sarah for a quote and dumdedum, you get your item.

MR @ SupermarketSarah's
Posing with the wall, maybe someone will buy me.

MR @ SupermarketSarah's
These glasses were Sarah's auntie's, now they are mine...

If you have time and are in London, I would strongly suggest going around Sarah's for a visit of her amazing little shop.

Have a look below to see Sarah making her wall...


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